Are you a new entrant into a marketplace?  Are you staring a new marketing campaign?  Are you facing tough competition from a bigger competitor?  One that has been in the market longer?  One that outspends you in advertising?  Or do you want to take the temperature of your competitive environment?  Do you know how your customers perceive you or your competitors?

How do brands measure this?

The most effective way to take any of these measurements is to implement brand awareness and perception tracking.  What does that mean?  Find out:

  • How well do consumers know your brand? Do they think of it immediately when the category is mentioned?  Do they need to be reminded?  Have they heard of it?  How do their responses to these questions compare with their responses about your competitors?
  • What perceptions do potential customers have about your product/service? Brand? Competitors?

A brand can use online surveys to drill down into these questions to gain an understanding of its positioning in the minds of its customers and potential consumers.  Such a survey is also a good vehicle for measuring several other key components:

  • What products/services does the respondent currently use?
  • What are purchase motivators? What product/service characteristics and/or value propositions are critical to consumers when making a purchase decision? Where does your product/service sit along that continuum? And in comparison to competitors?
  • How likely is the consumer to consider your product/service/brand? Why/why not?
  • What is the time frame for considering a purchase?
  • If a consumer is in the market for that product/service, where would they look/search?
  • Is your perception of your customer’s characteristics accurate?
  • Have potential customers seen your actual advertising?
  • How do potential customers react to your actual advertising?

What do these awareness studies track?

Initially it is important to establish a baseline.  Survey your target audience using a random sample of respondents who potentially could be customers, whose demographics and/or product category behavior match that of your customers.  Design the questionnaire to address the types of questions listed above.

To be most effective, you will want to repeat the survey on a regular basis, quarterly or semiannually, or within a week or two of a particular marketing campaign ending.  The comparison with the baseline and subsequent studies gives a dynamic picture of awareness and perceptions within your competitive marketplace, allowing you to constantly fine tune marketing strategies moving forward.

These surveys give you a snapshot of a particular moment in time.  Tracking those results over time  provides a wealth of information and actionable learnings to inform your marketing strategy:

  • Track awareness, perceptions and attitudes to gain insight into effectiveness of messaging and media strategies.
  • Identify consumer preferences, important factors, resources and behavior that can inform media as well as messaging and website strategy.
  • Understand your and your competitors’ customers’ awareness, attitudes, preferences and purchase behavior to hone messaging, media and website strategy.
  • Provide insight into your customer’s profile and characteristics and relevant segments.
  • Measure the effectiveness of your advertising in building awareness.
  • Identify the most important factors in customers’ decision-making process and determine likelihood of purchase and reasons why/why not.
  • Point out gaps in marketing strategy

We have helped a home appliance brand expand its understanding of its target consumers to increase its customer base, improved customer satisfaction scores of a utility through identifying consumer perceptions that could be improved through messaging and operational shifts, and guided creative development for a marketing campaign for a state agency program to ensure the messaging resonated with its intended audience.

Start Your Research Today

At Marketsmith, we do the hard research. From primary research (including brand and perception tracking) to competitive analysis, we leverage data not just to excite you with our smarts, but to help us build a strategy that will impact and inform your every business decision. Otherwise, what’s the point? Marketsmith gives you real-life information to guide your business from a challenger to a champion.

Learn more about our research solutions or contact us today to get started!